Dingell and Stupak strike again. Fresh on the heels of their DTC hearing, the two Congressmen have issued letters to four top pharma execs--CEOs at Merck, Pfizer, Schering-Plough, and Johnson & Johnson--asking them to commit to honest-Abe advertising. "Consumers should not have to rely on the oversight function of Congress to make sure drug companies tell the truth in their ad campaigns," Stupak said, calling DTC advertising a "privilege" that comes with responsibility.
The two men also question the industry's own DTC guidelines. In a separate letter to the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America, they say that the guidelines should be updated. Among the suggested changes: Ads for drugs with "black box" warnings have to specifically include that cautionary tale.